« PreviousContinue »
From those, who wish the downfall of our house !
reigns, When they are gone, then must I count my gains.
ACT THE SECOND.
Enter Tressel, meeting Lord STANLEY.
Tressel. My lord, your servant; pray what brought
you to St. Paul's ? Stanley. I came among the crowd, to see the corpse Of poor King Henry; 'tis a dismal sight; But yesterday I saw him the Tower; His talk is still so fresh within my memory, That I could weep, to think how fate has us'd him. I wonder where's Duke Richard's policy, In suffering him to lie expos’d to view; Can he believe that men will love him fort? Tressel. O yes, sir, love him, as he loves his
brothers. When was you with King Edward, pray, my lord ? I hear he leaves his food, is melancholy; And his physicians fear him mightily.
Stanley. 'Tis thought he'll scarce recover.
Tressel, I am oblig'd to pay attendance here:
Stanley. Mean you King Henry's daughter in law?
Stanley. Alas! poor lady! She's severely used !
yet, I hear, Richard attempts her love : Methinks the wrongs he's done her might discourage
him. Tressel. Neither those wrongs, nor his own shape,
can fright him: He sent for leave to visit her, this morning, And she was forc'd to keep her bed, to avoid him : Will you along To see this doleful ceremony?
Stanley. I'll wait upon you.
Glost. 'Twas her excuse, to avoid me.-Alas ! She keeps no bed -She has health enough to progress far as Chertsey, Tho' not to bear the sight of me. I cannot blame herWhy, love forswore me in my mother's womb, And, for I should not deal in his soft laws, He did corrupt frail nature with a bribe, To shrink my arm up, like a wither'd shrub, To make an envious mountain on my back, Where sits deformity, to mock my body; To shape my legs of an unequal size, To disproportion me in every part. And am I then a man to be belov’d? Oh monstrous thought ! more vain than my ambi
Enter LIEUTENANT, hastily. Lieut. My lord, I beg your graceGlost. Begone, fellow ! I'm not at leisure. Lieut. My lord, the King, your brother,'s taken ill.
Glost. I'll wait on him : leave me friend. Ha! Edward taken ill! 'Would he were wasted, marrow, bones, and all,
That from his loins no more young brats may rise,
Enter Lady Anne, in Mourning, LORD STANLEY, Tressel, GUARDS, BEARERS, with King Her
RY's Body, and Six LADIES in Mourning. But see, my love appears-look where she shines, Darting pale lustre, like the silver moon, Thro' her dark veil of rainy sorrow! So mourn'd the dame of Ephesus her love ; And thus the soldier, arm’d with resolution, Told his soft tale, and was a thriving wover. 'Tis true my form perhaps may little move her, But I've a tongue, shall wheedle with the devil : Why I can smile, and smile, and murder when I smile. And cry content, to that, which grieves my heart; And wet my cheek with artificial tears, And suit my face to all occasions. Yet hold, she mourns the man, that I have kill'd; First let her sorrows take some vent-stand here, I'll take her passion in its wain, and turn This storm of grief to gentle drops of pity For his repentant murderer.
[He retires. Lady A. Hung be the heav'ns with black; yield
day to night; Comets, importing change of times and states, Brandish vour fiery tresses in the sky,
them scourge the bad revolting stars, That have consented to King Henry's death. Oh! be accurst the hand, that shed his blood, Accurst the head, that had the heart to do it; If ever he have wife, let her be made More miserable by the life of him, Than I am now by Edward's death, and thine. Glost. Poor girl, what pains she takes to curse herself.
[Aside. Lady 4. If ever he have child, abortive be it,
Prodigious and untimely brought to light;
down. Lady A. What black magician conjures up this
fiend, To stop devo ted charitable deeds ?
Glost. Villains, set down the corse, or by St. Paul, I'll make a corse of him that disobeys. Guard. My lord, stand back, and let the coffin
pass. Glost. Unmanner'd slave ! stand thou, when I com.
mand, Advance thy halbert higher than my breast, Or, by St. Paul, I'll strike thee to
foot, And spurn upon thee, beggar, for thy boldness. Lady A. Why dost thou haunt him thus, unsated
fiend? Thou hast but power over his mortal body; His soul thou canst not reach, therefore begone.
Glost. Sweet saint, be not so hard for charity.
Lady A. If thou delight to view thy heinous deeds, Behold this pattern of thy butcheries. Why didst thou do this deed ? could not the laws Of man, of nature, nor of Heav'n dissuade thee? No beast so fierce, but knows some touch , pity.
Glost. If want of pity be a crime so hateful, Whence is it, thou, fair excellence, art guilty?
Lady A. What means the slanderer?
Glost. Vouchsafe, divine perfection of a woman, Of these my crimes suppos'd, to give me leave, By circumstance but to acquit myself. Lady A. Then take that sword, whose bloody point